Memphis/Ole Miss Renew FB Rivalry

(WMC-TV) The University of Memphis and Ole Miss are renewing their Football Series beginning in 2014, and have agreed in principle to continue the men's basketball series as soon as scheduling permits.

On the gridiron, the Tigers and Rebels will play a four game Home and Home series from 2014-2017.

"It's exciting for our fans both in Memphis and here in the state to see this natural rivalry resume in both sports," said Ole Miss Athletic Director Ross Bjork. "The Memphis community is a priority, and this series is important for our growing alumni base in the area.

Except for just a few seasons here and there, the schools, separated by only about 60 miles, have met almost year since 19-21, and have produced some of the largest crowds in both the Liberty Bowl here in Memphis, and Vaught Hemingway Stadium in Oxford.

New Tigers Athletic Director Tom Bowen says the Tigers non-conference schedule was already set for 20-13.

The basketball series won't be official until Memphis learns its' Big East schedule next Spring. Tiger men's basketball Sports Information Director Lamar Chance says the Big East could schedule 20 league games for conference members, leaving just 11 non-conference games for Memphis to add. The Tigers have also agreed to play Boise State and San Diego State in non-league games when they join the Big East.

Tiger basketball coach told the Commercial Appeal he's not thrilled about renewing the rivalry.

"I mean obviously my personal opinion is I don't want to play them," he said. "But if my athletic director says you're going to play them, I'm going to follow his lead.

The Tigers/Rebels renewal in 20-14 takes place in the second year the Tigers are in the Big East Conference.